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Content Delivery Networks

Chapter Description

Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) enhance the end user's experience by overcoming some inherent flaws in the Internet's anatomy and provide a solution to what was once a major challenge. This chapter covers how CDNs increase overall network performance by solving existing challenges, presents the components of a CDN solution, and provides recipe-based solutions that help in deploying a CDN architecture.

Content Filtering Solution

Employees using the Internet for non-business reasons results in lost productivity and wasted network bandwidth and can lead to "hostile work environment" lawsuits. Consequently, many enterprises must monitor, manage, and restrict employee access to non-business and objectionable content on the Internet.

The Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires that any school or library receiving federal E-Rate funds must have a filtering solution in place. By filtering irrelevant and unwanted Internet content, the Cisco Content Engine can be an effective tool for implementing and enforcing Internet usage policies as well as caching web content to improve delivery and WAN utilization. By deploying a Cisco Content Engine to cache content and using the SmartFilter option to filter non-productive URLs, enterprises can realize a quick return on investment as a result of increased productivity while recapturing network bandwidth and reducing legal liability. The Cisco Content Engine can filter URLs either by a limited internal deny and permit list, which the customer builds and configures, or with the SmartFilter subscription-based URL filtering software.

SmartFilter's Control List is currently composed of two million international URLs in 30 categories. Using automated methods to find and classify these URLs, the list is built and maintained by multi-lingual, multi-cultural Control List Technicians (CLTs), who physically review and categorize World Wide Web pages.

As Figure 5-8 demonstrates, an organization can filter at a local branch office or at headquarters.

Figure 5-8Figure 5-8 Content Filtering